So, why should Germany of all countries offer asylum to an American? Hochhuth writes that “more than any other, the German people are obligated to honour the right of asylum because, beginning in 1933, our elite, without exception from the Mann brothers to Einstein, survived the 12-year Nazi dictatorship purely because other countries, with the US as the greatest example, offered asylum to these refugees.”
Einstein, the Mann brothers - plus
those 500 or so Nazi scientists and engineers who "emigrated" to the US with "bleached" records and amnesty from any future prosecution - provided they took the research jobs they were offered once here. And all of this is thanks to something called Operation Paperclip
But that was only to keep them out of the hands of the Russians, who were doing the exact same thing, so apparently that made it all hunky-dorey
These really were a sweet bunch of guys. Here's a picture of 104 of them, looking healthy and happy at the US Ft. Bliss military research facility in Texas, taken back in 1946:
Interesting historical note: the US military detenion center operating in Cuba is not
the first secret detention and interrogation facility the US military has operated in direct and knowing contravention of the Geneva Convention.
Back at the end of WWII, the US operated a similar facility dubbed "P.O.Box 1142
" in Ft. Hunt, Virginia, that was used to detain and interrogate what would today be called "high value prisoners."
Although the program code-named MIS-Y secretly transferred "nearly 4000" prisoners (in a manner eerily similar to today's practice of "extraordinary rendition") to this facility from where they had been captured in Europe, the surviving camp records (and actual later accounts from those who had been "processed" and released from this facility) seems to conclusively indicate that no
form of torture had ever
been used on any
of the detainees.
Nice to see that the Americans, who faced down something as monstrous as Nazi Germany, still remembered what the United States - as a nation
- stood for when dealing with its enemies. That's something many in our succeeding generations seem to have strangely forgotten.
The bulk of P.O. Box 1142 facility, which was begun in 1942, was completely bulldozed in 1946.
There's a monument at Ft. Hunt commemorating this largely unknown bit of US WWII history: